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Daniel Denis - Les Eaux Troubles CD (album) cover


Daniel Denis


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Sean Trane
Prog Folk
3 stars 3.5 stars really! For his second solo album in a two year gap, Daniel Denis invited more "friends" and this guest list reads a bit like a who's who of experimental rock in Belgium. Catoul is now defunct but was a good violinist, Segers of course an ancient UZ and Present alumni, Vervloesem is the guitarist leader of those crazy X-Legged Sally, and more.... Without forgetting UZ future members Kuiken and Descheemaeker.

Unlike the previous album, the tracks are shorter and some suggest a bit of humour something almost inconcievable with such somber music still very much in U Z mould.

Recommended only to the usual fans of such adventurous music.

Report this review (#34334)
Posted Friday, February 25, 2005 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Daniel Denis has doggedly followed his unique muse for over 30 years, never compromising his artistic vision. Les Eaux Troubles is the most musically diverse and probably the most personally revealing work of this remarkable composer and performer, and is also something of a bridge between phase 1 and phase 2 of Univers Zero.

The two lengthy tracks that open and (almost) close the album are closest in style to Univers Zero, and in between them he lets his muse run free and pays homage to some of his influences. 'Coeur de Boeuf' - literally translated 'Heart of Beef' is a deftly executed tip of the hat to another great individual stylist, Captain Beefheart, and features some nimble marimba playing from future Univers Zero member Bart Quartier. 'Bulgarian Flying Spirit Dances' draws heavily on the East European composers who are an obvious influence on his work, particularly Bartok. 'Opus Rictus', despite the sombre title, is almost playful, propelled along by bass tuba and some agreeably daft massed voices. Denis' drumming is impeccable throughout, and he coaxes superb performances from all his guests. Jan Kuijken on cello and Dirk Descheemaeker on clarinet make particularly fine contributions.

This album is recommended to any fans of RIO and Zeuhl. Whilst it's not exactly easy listening, it's probably the most accessible of Denis' work to date.

Report this review (#34335)
Posted Friday, March 4, 2005 | Review Permalink
5 stars God, I just love this stuff. The beauty of Daniel Denis is that you can enjoy the music on quite a few levels. Since I am not classically trained or educated, I can't imagine the knowledge that it takes to produce this unique peak into the creative source of Daniel Denis. But, as a prog rock guy, loving the RIO from it's inception: Henry Cow, Art Zoyd, and of course Denis' group Univers Zero, this album is a nice challenge, but yet very, very accessible.

The beauty of this offering, which is quite a bit different from Daniel's incredible first album, is the ensemble approach. Very organic, with just a small touch of nice synthetic stuff added as "color." The recording is also very clean and the placement of sounds in the stereo spectrum is natural and yet really lends itself to headphone listening.

I for one am so thankful for Daniel Denis as he is a drummers drummer, and yet his real talent lies in composition and execution of ideals and ideas. Thank you Mr. Denis for the years of the very best in the RIO genre.

Report this review (#430708)
Posted Monday, April 11, 2011 | Review Permalink

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